phase change
This is an archived page. (current posts)

7.28.2003  
Geo

Ever wonder where a site is, in the "real-world"?* Have a gander at GeoURL, which maps physical locations to their sites. The detailed maps are particularly cool... how's that for an overlay of the status of web tech? As cyberpunk godfather William Gibson said, "The future is already here; it's just not evenly distributed yet." [and who knew he has a blog?!? holy schneikies...]

As with many good things over the years, I got this at webmonkey.

* Please do me the favor of imagining these as snarky air-quotes
~ scott @ 9:30 AM [link]
7.16.2003  
A Movie Made Me Think

I'm reading this book The Matrix and Philosophy (great subtitle from the movie: Welcome to the Desert of the Real) which is an intro to philosophy using the Matrix as a conceptual entry point. A few of the essays talk about real vs. virtual along the lines of waking vs. dreaming brain states, which has me doing some thinking about dreams and why I don't often pay that much attention to them.

Mainly, I guess, because of our cultural standard of presuming that they aren't REAL, or not as real, and meaningful, as the stuff that happens while awake. But the small bit of cultural anthropology I've gleaned from the Discovery channel suggests that this isn't necessarily so for all cultures -- well, duh, and even our own Western mythology put a lot more stock in dreams as prophecy and guidance than we do. A cast-off, along with some of the wackier parts of old religions, created by the Age of Enlightenment? Has science even begun to reasonably assert a substitute interpretation of what dreams are for and what we're supposed to do with that information? My gut says that the common assumption that it's recycled crap from our daytime consciousness climbing back to the top of the awareness heap is pretty limited... we seem awfully well adapted towards dreaming if it's just a bunch of waste heat being vented off, don't we? And I wonder what's going on when a sleeping cat's eyelids flicker in that characteristic way... instructions from the mothership?

God knows my dreams are often more cohesive than how I feel going through the day, many times -- especially when monitor vertigo sets in and I start thinking the whole world is a computer.... And with the fuzzy effect that memory applies over time, I think some dreams mean more in the long term that waking experiences do. Perhaps it all comes down to how the sensory experience is stored in our heads? Maybe there's no flag in the mind database for "dream input/awake input" and it's all stored as plaintext?

(thanks for indulging a realtime ponderous pondering)

OTHER RECENT READING

Wabi-Sabi: for Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosophers - Leonard Koren
My Tiny Life: Crime and Passion in a Virtual World - Julian Dibbell
The Second Coming of Steve Jobs - Alan Deutschman
~ scott @ 9:35 AM [link]

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